“Sadly, security teams are only likely to come under more pressure in 2020, as the COVID-19 outbreak and its aftermath have profound effects on businesses’ budgets and ability to operate,” said Amanda Finch, CEO of CIISec. “Unless the industry can learn how to do more with less while also addressing issues of diversity and burnout, risks will rise and organisations will suffer. To avoid this, we need the right people with the right skills, giving them the help they need to reach their full potential. This doesn’t only apply to technical skills, but to the people skills that will be essential to giving organisations a security-focused culture that can cope with the growing pressure ahead.”
Against this background of increased pressure and risk, attracting and retaining security personnel needs to be a priority. The top three reasons to take a new security job were:
Conversely, the top reasons for leaving a security job were a lack of opportunity or progression; unpleasant or bad management; and poor remuneration.
There is also the question of diversity. Of all the respondents, only 10 percent were women. While this has doubled since 2015, it still suggests there is a long way to go.
To better understand the need for diversity, CIISec dug further into the data for both men and women to investigate whether there were any notable differences. Although men and women were equally represented across age and level of education received, women were paid significantly less on average or were in lower paying roles. For instance:
“Addressing a lack of diversity in the industry isn’t only a matter of fairness,” continued Amanda Finch. “It also unlocks the skills and talents of a whole range of people who could collectively rejuvenate the industry and help reduce the huge pressure many security teams are under. We need to do all we can both to attract new blood to a career in security, and to ensure those already in place want to stay there. Understanding why people join – and why they leave – is the beginning of building a resilient workforce that can face the challenges ahead.”
The report also uncovered a number of insights, including: